Thursday, December 29, 2016

Christmas Update!

As usual, I am feeling a bit behind -- that was my MO for the whole
Christmas season,
so guess I will continue it a while longer!

We had a fabulous birthday celebration for Miss M and Christmas! 
But first, just a couple days before Christmas, our wonderful
neighbors held their annual Santa party!

Last year, their house was being rebuilt due to a fire and
we missed them so much --
it took 9 months to rebuild the inside of their house!!
The main damage was not really due to the fire, but due to the
copious amounts of water used to put out the attic fire.  
I think that was the only year in the past 15 that they
haven't hosted a Santa party
at their home just before Christmas!
Even though, she may be getting a bit too old
for Santa, he talked her into a quick photo!
Please excuse my iPhone photo -- I think I need a new phone
to get better photos, of course!

Mr. Krier (choir director-back right) is amazing and so are all these freshman girls!

More holiday fun -- Maddy's choir group sang at a holiday celebration
at a local hospital.
They did such a great job and were all pretty amazing considering
it was an early Saturday morning choir event!
I think the girls LOVED being able to wear Santa sweaters and jeans!
Do you believe it -- there are 72 freshman girls in choir
(they weren't all at this event,
but that's pretty amazing, isn't it)!
By the way, they sound like angels singing!

Great singing voices!

We hosted Christmas at our house with my sons, daughter-in-law
and four littles!  I even cooked!!!
I made beef stew and biscuits --  it was delish, but
not a fave with the kiddos.
However, I have never professed or sought to be a great cook anyway!
We had so much fun with everyone together --
it was really special!
Somehow we missed out on getting many photos
because we were busy chatting and opening gifts. 
I'm checking with the other
in-house photographer (Maddy) to see if she has any photos,
so may update this later.

But, if I don't get a chance to chat with you all again . . .
Happy New Year friends!

Tuesday, December 20, 2016

Happy Happy Birthday!

Today is Miss M's 15th birthday!
On my word -- I can hardly believe she is 15 already!

I have so many things to say about Maddy --
that she is a blessing beyond belief; 
that she is sweet and sensitive
and thoughtful and caring; 
that she has the biggest and most tender heart; 
that she is a loyal friend;
that she is silly and funny;
that she sets goals and is determined to meet
each and every one; 
that she is a diligent and hard working student; 
that she is a taskmaster when it comes to 
doggie training and photography and sewing!;
that she has a big faith;
that she is brave and strong;
that she loves snow on her birthday 
and  a white Christmas; Disney World, bbq chips and french fries;
that we are the luckiest people in
the world to have her in our family.

Happy Happy Birthday Sweet Maddy!

Friday, December 16, 2016

Ringing Some Bells!

Maddy and I have often said that we
should volunteer and ring the bells for the Salvation Army.
So, I contacted the volunteer coordinator through
my good friend Jodee and
signed us up!

Our red kettle duty was last Saturday
when the temp was around 20, the wind was blowing at least at 30 mph, the
wind chill temp was 10 or below
and our location was not one that was not protected by 
What I'm trying to say is  . . . 
Baby, it was cold outside!

We rang loudly whenever people were 
going in or out of the store and even
louder if someone put some money in the kettle!
Maddy made me sing along some Christmas 
carols with her -- I may have frightened 
off donors when they heard my voice!

Even though we were cold, we both deemed it a worthwhile
endeavor.  Next year, we will try to get the cheerleaders to 
ring bells too -- hmmm- somehow I think high school
cheerleaders could generate a few more cash donations!
Merry Merry Christmas!

Thursday, December 15, 2016

A Little Bit of Ice is Nice!

Last weekend when the weather took a 
sudden and definite dip into the low temps,
Maddy and a friend went ice skating!
BRRRR -- it was freezing!

Railyard Ice Rink (from their website)
The girls did fairly well for their first visit of the
year to the outdoor skating rink.  They even
moved away from the sides after a few
trips around the rink.
No one fell!  I'd call that a success!

The great Christmas movie Elf was
showing on the outdoor screen!

If the temp wasn't 10 degrees, I would
have sat outside by this lovely fire and watched the movie
and the girls skating.

I think I made the best choice when I went inside for 
hot chocolate with whipping cream! 

Thursday, December 8, 2016

Doggie Bandanas, Craft Fairs and Holiday Napkins!

As you may recall, Maddy and I took on
special little project recently -- sewing and embroidering.
I almost felt like Ma Ingalls from Little House on the Prairie -
but I admit, I did have electricity and sewing and embroidery  machines!

After a couple weeks of nearly non-stop sewing in the evenings-- well, we did
take bathroom and school/work breaks, the craft fair took place last

Mads and I were so excited and had quite a bit of inventory including
doggie bandanas, a few dog collar scrunchies and holiday embroidered napkins.
Yes, the napkins would go into the category of 
"what one thing doesn't belong with the others?"
we wanted to include them, as we loved them.
Yes, we are  those people who think whatever we
make (especially homemade) is fabulous!  :)

You probably can't tell, but these bandanas are really well made, have soft
coordinating-color flannel on the back for doggies and do not tie.
 Instead, we sewed a channel for the 
dog's collar to go through.  So, you slide the collar through and then clip
 the collar shut around your pup's neck, voila - the bandana cannot fall off!  
Doggies - beware -- there is no sneaking out of this bandana!

Back to the craft fair report - guess when the weather decided to change and snow 
decided to fall???  Last Saturday!
Soooooo, I'm attributing poor turnout to the weather 
and the people who did visit either didn't have dogs, had never
seen anything but paper napkins before and had no intention
of purchasing anything at the craft fair.
We sold maybe 5 bandanas and 1 scrunchie in 6 hours!
Big disappointment!  :(

While we were bummed, we decided we would try again some other time,
but NOT at that craft fair!

Dog collar scrunchie!

It really was not a waste of effort or time as Maddy told me
her favorite part was the time we spent on the production
line with her cutting and me sewing!
Some evenings she had me sewing up to 10 PM!

Maddy designed her own logo and
had a business card printed
We have an entrepreneur on our hands!
Shark Tank here we come!

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

A Cooking Post!

As most of you know, I am not the best cook or meal planner!
I seriously lack in the that department.
But, I actually made a dinner on Sunday
that everyone loved.
I spent the evening patting myself on the back about it!

It was a copy-cat from The Pioneer Woman.
I watch her show whenever I'm on the treadmill
and always think --  "I could make that!"
And I finally did!

This photo and recipe is from her website and is known as
Chicken and Dressing One Pan supper!
It was delish!
And only one pan -- gotta like that!
Mr. Tennis could not stop raving about it,
so am sure I will put it on the menu again.
Even Maddy liked it --
well, she liked the chicken --
 the veggies not so much!
Here's the link to the recipe.
Thank you PW for this one!

Friday, December 2, 2016

Hello December - Hello Craft Fair!

For the past month, Maddy and I have been
getting ready for a craft fair that will be held  tomorrow (EEK)
Saturday, December 3rd!

Maddy and I will be selling homemade doggie bandanas (sizes mini and standard) and
dog collar scrunchies!
We have been sewing like crazy and spent over 3 hours
of Black Friday shopping at JoAnn's fabrics waiting in line
for holiday fabrics!

Some of our inventory!
We are also selling embroidered holiday napkins!
If you have a chance, please stop in.
Our napkins are similar to the one below - however, that one
was silk screened and ours are embroidered.
We've been so busy sewing, embroidering and ironing along with
all the usual school and work stuff that we failed to get
photos of any of our napkins!
No worries, we'll get some later!

Since we've never done anything like this before, we have no
idea how it will go, but Maddy is fairly certain we will
be super successful.  So much so, that
she designed a business card
for her Happy Hound Collection!
That girl!  She's such a little entrepreneur!
Sorry for the bad photo of her card -- believe me, it is super cute!

Wish us luck! 

Thursday, December 1, 2016

ThrowBack Thursday - Christmas Card Edition

Maddy and I have been out at least 2-3 times
attempting to get photos for the Christmas card
this year!
Here's a Throwback Thursday Christmas card attempt from
a couple years ago!

Loved that hat and wanted to do a similar
look this year.  I even bought a new hat . . .but she declined!

Yesterday Maddy was delighted to 
see a few itty bitty snow flurries!!
I was happy when they disappeared into thin air!

She would be most delighted to have a repeat
of the early December snowstorm of
2009 -- throwback Thursday edition!

I'm in no hurry to put on the snowboots and get out
the shovel!
But . . . the weatherman is predicting some for
next week!